Landscape Plants of the Upper Midwest

Kentucky Wisteria

{Picture of Kentucky Wisteria}
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Plant Information

  • Plant Type: Vine
  • Scientific Name: Wisteria macrostachya Play audio of plant name
  • Family: Wisteria
  • Zone: 5
  • Bloom Time: Spring
  • Bloom Color: Purple
  • Habit: Twining tendrils
  • Culture:

    Very adaptable. Full sun. A twining vine.

  • Notes:

    Charming lavender flowers are borne on long hanging clusters in May followed by tan fruit pods that remain throughout winter. Is quite striking when the long (up to 18") flower clusters hang from an arbor or pergola. It is important to obtain plants from a northern source proven to be reliably hardy in zone 5.

  • How vines climb:

    The means by which vines climb can be divided into two broad categories: those that twine around a supporting structure, and those that hold onto structures by use of holdfasts.

    Twining: Twining vines wrap around a support using tendrils, petioles or the stem of the vine. These vines require a support structure that facilitates twining such as a fence, arbor or trellis. When these vines become overgrown they can be renewed by cutting the entire plant back severely in early spring.

    Holdfasts: This group of vines attach using holdfasts or aerial roots, structures that fasten the vine stem by sticking directly to a structure. These vines can affix to almost any surface, but are best used on masonry. They are not recommended on wood structures as they create a moist environment that can lead to rot, and the holdfasts are difficult to remove and may damage the wood

  • Pruning:Pruning animation

    Renewal pruning is accomplished by removing the largest, oldest stems (generally 1/4 to 1/3 of the total stems) as close to the ground as possible. This will stimulate new shoots to develop below the cuts which will fill in the plant creating a more dense and pleasing habit.

    Renewal pruning should be done when the plant is dormant, late fall to early spring.

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Landscape Plants of the Upper Midwest
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Contact
Bill Hoch, Associate Professor
Montana State University
E-mail: bhoch@montana.edu

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